How to Create a Magical Underwater Scene with Photoshop

May 26, 2024

Find out how to turn any landscape image into an underwater scene! This Photoshop tutorial will show you how to apply color adjustments to make your land photos look submerged and create a magical glow with some light rays.

Photoshop Tutorial

Downloads you need for this Photoshop tutorial

This tutorial uses 2 stock photos. Download the images below before proceeding with the tutorial.

Step 1

Start by opening the image of the cave into Photoshop.

Step 2

Crop the image like this with the Crop tool.

Step 3

We’re going to start by turning this cave image into an underwater scene. Start by adding a new Hue/Saturation adjustment layer (layer > New Adjustment Layer > Hue/Saturation).

In the Adjustments panel (Window > Adjustments), apply the settings shown below.

Here’s what your image looks like.

Step 4

Add a new Solid Color adjustment layer. You can do this by going to Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid Color.

Make sure this fill layer is set as the top layer. Reduce the opacity to 50% – this is just a temporary opacity change (we’ll set it back to 100% later) so that we can see the layers below.

Step 5

Select the Rectangular Marquee tool and create a selection like this.

Step 6

Go to Select > Modify > Feather. Set the Feather Radius to around 100 pixels. If you’re using a higher resolution image, you may need to increase this setting so that you get a smoother transition.

Step 7

First, make sure you the the layer mask for the color fill layer selected. You can select it by clicking on the thumbnail (highlighted yellow in the image below).

Go to Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast. Checkmark the “Use Legacy” option then adjust the settings like shown below.

Step 8

Press Ctrl+D (Cmd+D on a Mac) to deselect then set the opacity back to 100%.

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2 comments on “How to Create a Magical Underwater Scene with Photoshop”

  1. Is there any main difference between Photoshop 7 and CS6? Will your provide a photoshop tutorials for both the platform to clear mind of many beginners.

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